Monday, December 17, 2012

Seth-- the ultimate postmodern?

While perusing the Wikipedia article on postmodernism, it struck me--postmodernism encapsulates the essential tenets of Sethian philosophy. I recommend any Seth fan read the entry. "Reality is not mirrored in human understanding of it, but is rather constructed as the mind tries to understand its own personal reality"? Check. "Postmodernism is therefore skeptical of explanations that claim to be valid for all groups, cultures, traditions, or races, and instead focuses on the relative truths of each person"? Check. "Postmodernism postulates that many, if not all, apparent realities are only social constructs and are therefore subject to change"? Check that, too. Which raises some questions.  Did the mainstreaming of postmodernism in the 1960s influence Jane Roberts' philosophy and thereby serve as an unconscious source for the Seth material? Was Seth, timeless being that he was, in fact an adherent of the intellectual fad of the late 20th Century? Will future generations, with presumably even more modern paradigms, look down on the Seth writings and mutter, "How quaint?" Somehow, I think that Seth would be amused at my speculations and would not hesitate to set me straight. However, we cannot escape the inescapable: even beings no longer focused in physical reality must communicate in a way that is immediately understood by the contemporary culture. And ideally, they should, like Seth, be on the cutting edge if they have any ambition of obtaining street cred.

(My father, by the way, was a stubborn modernist who often railed against the relativism of the young'ins. The so-called generation gap of the '60s was actually a clash between two philosophical world views.")

I've stumbled upon a number of writings channeled at the turn of the last century-- all now in public domain and now largely forgotten-- that provide semi- interesting reading. The problem that I find with them is that while they may have been cutting edge in their day, they sound old- fashioned now. I have a hard time suspending my disbelief in them. Why would any elevated being bother to communicate such uninteresting ideas? Among the dozens that I have collected, however, I have found one set of writings that strike me as original and-- Sethian.

The writings are known as, simply, "Claude's Book" and "Claude's Second Book." They purport to be the channeled writings of an airman who was killed in World War One. There's almost no information about them in any source that I've checked, but I think they may be, in fact, what they claim to be. For any interested, I'll be glad to post them. I'd be interested in any feedback or additional information about the material.

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